Monday, June 22, 2015
-Crocodile Farm last monday. Held a sunbear. that was cool. (see pictures)
We have been teaching a free English Class and a free basketball class. After each class we hold a gospel class for those who want to stay. Each time about half of the class stays around 8 of the 16 people..it has been really effective..
I ate snail this week for the first time this week..yumm
Been back at the 100 100 100 drill this week but I am having to work up to it...right now just at 70 70 70..
Made some way good Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo and spanish rice this week from scratch..I love all the cooking skills I am getting from Elder South.. we cook from scratch a lot..it is fun..can't wait for me to cook sunday dinners for the family when I get home :)
The missionary's this week did a musical number for the senior couple's farewell..I played the piano..it was a mesh of My Heavenly Father Loves Me, God Be With You Till' We Meet Again and I am a Child of God. Then on Sunday I did my arrangement of Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing..
It is nice to move areas because then I can play all my hymn arrangements again and no one knows them! It is like I get to start over again!
This week I hooked up a speaker to my helmet so I can listen to conference as I bike around.. in Chinese, we spend a lot of time biking and it makes the time so much more useful..don't worry I am careful..
Our investigators are awesome!
-Jason - He offered us a ride home from church for free after we missed the bus twice..now he is coming to church and doing all that good stuff :) God leads the prepared right into your arms sometimes..
Leonerd and Larry are both found through members and our basketball class, both are coming to church and on date to be baptized on July 11th! Super excited for them!
All of our work seems to be in the range of 17-25 year old young men. It is great I love it.
Monday, June 15, 2015
So last monday we played basketball and we had a bunch of Chinese teenagers play for us.
We teach a free English class each week and so I had the idea, well if we teach free english class then why not teach a free basketball class..?
The kids (all about high school age) actually asked me to teach them so that also pushed the idea..
So on Thursday we had our first official class where I taught them some drills and stuff for an hour and then we taught a lesson about Jesus Christ after for anyone who wanted to stay and listen..(see picture below)
We actually had a decent turnout of about 15 kids and about 7 stayed for the lesson after, 2 came to church on Sunday and 1 is on date for baptism on July 11th! and that is just after one class!
We had our second class tonight which went good and we had about 17 kids come..
We are planning on keeping it going once a week..possibly twice..the kids are really really excited about it..
This area has not seen a lot of success in the past year or so...but by thinking outside the box we have seen some miracles..
Also I hit my year mark this week! We celebrated with a killer breakfast (chocolate chip pancakes, eggs and bacon) some stuff I haven't had in a long time..
Also we burned a shirt at the beach to mark our year mark..(see picture..) it is a missionary tradition..we had to hand build a fire though so it took me back to Boy Scouts..
Been cooking a lot inside..enchiladas, lasagna, vegetable and meat stews, Fried Chicken, mashed potatoes, pot roast, and more..
Also biking through some of the biggest rainstorms this week, it is like Kuching all over again..:) Except that here we cross a lot more rivers and bike through the jungle a lot.. (see pictures)
Lately I have been learning more how to write Chinese..I am trying to write everything that I do in Chinese Characters..it is a slow process but it will come..not only do you have to know how to draw the character but also the order the strokes go in or else it looks wrong to the natives..
One of our miracle finds through the basketball class is named Larry..he is on date to be baptized on July 11th, he is a big dude (see pictures) but is a lot of fun and really loves the gospel..we are so excited to be teaching him..
This week I have been thinking about our belief in Jesus Christ.. We have a lot of less-actives in our branch who say that they believe in Jesus Christ until they are blue in the face but won't do anything..(read scriptures, pray, come to church etc..)
There is a lady who always wears Jesus Christ shirts around but refuses do act or actually listen to what he says..it is a serious problem in this area..
What we do is more important than what we say. Just remember that if you really truly believe in Jesus Christ then you will do what he says..
So look at your own belief in Jesus Christ and then you can read what he teaches in the Bible and Book of Mormon and see where you can improve.. we all can..
"The study of doctrine of Jesus Christ changes the behavior of people faster than the study of behavior changes people." -Boyd K. Packer
love you all,
Monday, June 8, 2015
It was so hard to say goodbye in JB! The members there are definitely my favorite of any area thus far. On Tuesday night we had a big branch FHE with about 30 people to say goodbye to everyone since me and my companion were both leaving..
It was hard leaving Hady (we found the first week i was there in a big mall and she got baptized), Susanna (found on the bus and she is now baptized and wants to go to the temple next year with us!), Potmah's family (Indian family who's grandson was baptized), Lily's Family(who's son was baptized and we did FHE's every week at there house!) and the Ng's because he came with us to every lesson.
Then I got on a plane (well two - 4 hour layover in KL) and flew back to East Malaysia!
Oh man the smell of East Malaysia is so so good. Plus Miri is right on the beach and it just smells so good here. It is a small city, nothing compared to Kuching or JB. We bike everywhere like Kuching, unlike JB. And it is all Malay speaking people and Chinese, no Indian people here.
It is super flat here and we live a 20 min bike from the beach. It is super quiet and relaxing here. It feels like I am on vacation I love it. We live in a two elder house. First time I lived with only my companion and the first time I have lived in a house. It makes things a lot quieter and it has been really nice.
My companion Elder South is awesome. He is from Menan, Idaho population 741. He builds domes for a living. Seriously. Look up SouthIndustries.com
He loves to cook at home and so we have been doing a lot of that (lasagna, meat and vegetable stews, etc.) it has been great. He is super easy going and so we have been getting along great.
Sorry there is lot to talk about today..
Chinese people! There are tons here! The branch is in Chinese so that is nice. The branch is super small though. We had two people in Elders quorum yesterday. And one was the American Elder's quorum president from Texas who is working here for a couple years.
Workouts have been great. Biking again has got me back into good shape this week and have been lifting at home and running and ball handling.
-Today we are going to play bball with some investigators and Potential investigators so that should be fun. And massacre some chickens. Yep. you heard me right.
This week we went to a chinese cemetary. Helping them index it. It is so huge.
Also we volunteer at a recycling plant here. That was fun. Got some blisters but it was fun. All Chinese people.
Our area is great. We had two investigators and a less active come to church this week. The same kid who we are playing basketball with today. His 3 siblings and their friend are super awesome and are on date to be baptized on July 11th! Already seeing success in this area. The other two areas it took at least 6 weeks of work before we saw anything significant happen but not here! I am excited!
Our branch is crazy. We have 15+ return missionaries in our little branch (attendance 22 this week) and they are almost all inactive. It is sad. But we will do what I can. The weird this is that they loved their missions but just won't come to church..
I have been thinking and pondering happiness while being in this vacation area Miri! But really we were created so we could be happy..think about it... 2 Nephi 2:25
Be happy! Relax a little! God wants us to be happy. It may sound silly but so true. Enjoy.
Love you all,
-pictures Lily's kids drew me before I left..
-Looking Muslim at the Airport..(those are the hats the men wear)
-Elder South and the new study room!
-Taking our investigators to church!
Monday, June 1, 2015
-Transfers! Well I am headed back to East Malaysia! Crazy! I will be in Miri! With Elder South! He is from Idaho and was in my MTC group! He is great and I am excited! I fly out on Wednesday morning so next week I will be emailing from there!
Our area was cut out because there is a lot of elders going home and so there are less areas. All of our investigators and stuff is now loaded onto the other Chinese Elders companionship.
Miri is a biking area from what I have heard and so I am excited to get back on a bike! Other than that I am sure you will hear a lot more about it next week!
-Been running like crazy this week! a 5k in the morning and then a couple more each night. It has been great.
-We put up a new net on the basketball court. It looks sick, thanks Dad. I forgot how much I loved hearing the ball swish through an actual net :)
-Elder Lu got kissed twice on the cheek this week. Believe it or not. We had a lesson with some new Indian investigators and he started tearing up during his testimony and the wife freaked out. She started like rubbing his chest and trying to calm him down even though he was fine just getting a little emotional. Then she kissed him once on each cheek, I guess she thought it might make him feel better. :)
-We went to a college here in JB this week to meet a potential investigator and wow. When we walked in I thought I could feel like how it must of felt to feel like a black person in an all white school 50 years ago. Everyone was staring at us way hard. But we met a lot a people there and it was great. It reminded me of being in college. It was really weird. Everyone was talking about Chemistry and Biology and stuff. So weird.
Then the next day we got kicked out of the college. Figured. We should have known. That is a crazy story for when I come home from my mission.
- We had a branch activity this week. Played capture the flag at this beautiful park. It was a lot of fun.
-Two weeks ago we had a member friend named Vivy start taking lessons from us. In the very first lesson without us even mentioning baptism she told us that she would listen but would never ever get baptized. Well, that is what we do so we were pretty down about it but we felt to keep teaching her anyways. Well, yesterday we taught her after church and she broke down crying in her own closing prayer of the lesson. It was so sweet and the spirit was so strong. She wants to get baptized now.
It is amazing to be apart of such a quick, huge turnaround of thought process. I testify that the spirit can do that. God can work these miracles not a cowboy and myself. It's him and it is amazing to be a part of it every single day. I love it so much.
One thing I will share that I have learned this week. With all your learning get some understanding. I read the whole Book of Mormon only looking for references about the gospel of Jesus Christ (which is a lot) and didn't learn a lot but then I took three days of personal studies and just pondered the gospel of Jesus Christ and learned more in those three days then I did in the two months of reading the Book of Mormon.
Just take the time to actually digest and understand what you are learning about and it will you learn understand a ton more :)
love you all,
P.S. I finished the Book of Mormon in Chinese this week. (Simplified Characters!)